You can’t buy tooth implants at Costco. You can’t compare relative costs on Amazon. The rates aren’t listed on your dentist’s site.
There is a reason for this.
A tooth implant procedure isn’t one-size-fits-all.
The price of a permanent tooth implant depends on many factors.
First, let’s designate what we are talking about.
A dental implant is a tooth replacement that is screwed directly into the jaw bone. It is not attached to the adjacent teeth like a dental bridge. The post replaces the tooth root and is implanted where the tooth root used to be. When the post fuses with the bone, the dentist attaches an abutment and then a crown for the visible portion of the tooth.
It’s important to understand that an implant involves several elements:
- The post (screw)
- The abutment
- The crown
So, how much does a dental implant cost?
Give me a rough estimate….
In North Carolina, you can expect to pay from $1,000 to $3,000 for one implant (the post that is screwed in).
Then there is the abutment (connector piece) and crown. These components could cost from $900 to $3,000.
This would bring the total cost from $1900 to north of $5,000.
Remember, this is for ONE post, abutment, and crown.
What if I need a whole bunch of implants?
Some people spend between $20,000 and $50,000 for a total mouth reconstruction.
Implants seem really costly…
An implant procedure is oral surgery. It requires consultation and additional visits. It requires X-rays and impressions. You might need bone grafting to augment the bone where the implant will be placed.
There are indirect amounts as well…
Your dentist will pick up the components from a dental supplier. The dental crown is custom-made in a lab. Dental laboratories have pricey equipment. They employ professionals who are specially trained.
Consider your dentist’s schooling. Just one year of dental school costs between $30,000 and $70,000… (Don’t forget, your dentist earned an undergraduate degree before attending dental school.)
Your dentist employs a team of professionals. A dental office must buy and maintain expensive equipment and supplies.
According to the American Dental Association, it costs at least $500,000 to open a dental practice. The yearly overhead can run over $200,000.
Does my dental insurance cover dental implants?
Some North Carolina dental insurance carriers cover dental implant procedures. Some only cover the crown portion. Others don’t cover any portion of the procedure. It’s unfortunate that more dental insurers don’t cover implants. They are cheaper over the long run. They preserve bone. They don’t require removing tooth structure like dental bridges. They don’t have as many complications as dental bridges.
Talk to your provider. If your insurance company doesn’t cover them, or if you don’t have dental insurance, speak with us about financing.
Permanent dental implants are costly. No doubt about it.
But if you talk to our patients, each one will tell you that they are worth every penny.